Directly Speaking - Do Something!

by Scott A. Meyers, Executive Vice President
October 1, 2014

I’m writing this month’s column the day after the 2014 Annual Meeting, and I’m still a little tired. Okay, I’m a lot tired! But I’m also kind of fired up! I saw a lot of things at this meeting that have given me a new energy and excitement for the direction of ICHP. And not because it was bogged down or headed in the wrong direction to begin with, but rather because I saw a lot of young people there – new practitioners, residents, and students! I saw networking with the young and not so young. I saw programming that tells me pharmacy has a bright future!  

The New Practitioners Network was very visible during the Annual Meeting with their NPN Mixer or “Meet Up” as Diana Isaacs, NPN out-going Chair, called it on Friday evening. The turnout was impressive! In addition, the back cover of the Annual Meeting syllabus sported an ad for the upcoming “Walk for the Cure”, a fundraiser for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation that the NPN has signed up for. The walk will be October 5th at Montrose Harbor on the lakeshore in Chicago. There’s still time to sign up and walk with the team (all are welcome) or contribute toward the team’s fundraising goal. To contribute or walk you can sign on at

During the Annual Meeting Town Hall Meeting, an ICHP member asked the ICHP Board to consider helping all six College of Pharmacy Student Societies of Health-System Pharmacists (SSHPs) find a common philanthropic cause to support in order to make a bigger impact in the State. During the same Town Hall Meeting, the Community Service page on the ICHP website was mentioned as a great way for members to publicize any local community service project that is open to other pharmacists, technicians, students, spouses and friends. At the Saturday Awards Luncheon, Director of Professional Affairs, Desi Kotis, complimented all the SSHPs on their efforts in community service and philanthropy when awarding this year’s Student Chapter of the Year Award.

Finally, during her inaugural address, ICHP’s new President, Linda Fred shared one of her favorite quotes by Aaron Sorkin, “Decisions are made by those who show up.” She called on ICHP members to get involved in ICHP activities, department activities and more to help improve our patients' care!

All these different unrelated yet related observations came into clear focus for me this morning as I drove to church. This week’s service was especially important for me because it was a celebration of what many of our members and others from all around Rockford accomplished while renovating and refurbishing another school building this summer in the Rockford School District – the 13th school in 8 years! To make a long story short, as I drove I heard a song that I love by Matthew West titled, “Do Something,” and it just made sense! Here’s the first verse and the chorus; see if you can figure out what I heard:

"Do Something" By Matthew West

I woke up this morning
Saw a world full of trouble now
Thought, how’d we ever get so far down
How’s it ever gonna turn around
So I turned my eyes to Heaven
I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”
Well, I just couldn’t bear the thought of
People living in poverty
Children sold into slavery
The thought disgusted me
So, I shook my fist at Heaven
Said, “God, why don’t You do something?”
He said, “I did…… I created you”

If not us, then who
If not me and you
Right now, it’s time for us to do something
If not now, then when
Will we see an end
To all this pain
It’s not enough to do nothing
It’s time for us to do something

This is a Christian song, and I know that many ICHP members are Jewish, many others are Muslim, Hindu or other religions while others don’t believe in a higher power. The beauty of living in America is that everyone has the freedom to choose, but regardless, the message is still “Do Something”, if you really want to make a difference. The message (sermon or homily to some of you) at church this morning continued to hammer that message home, and at the end of the service, Matthew West’s song with a great video finished out the service. I sat in my seat and thought, “You’re talking to me!” Surprisingly, I had already planned to write this very article featuring this very song before I even got in my seat.

ICHP’s Board of Directors, Divisions, Committees and all our volunteers and staff work hard to improve pharmacy practice from a variety of directions and with a variety of projects. But we can all do more, or in some cases, something, to help the world around us. We can help build a better medication management system at work, become a more active volunteer within ICHP, contribute to a worthwhile charity, or actively participate in a worthy project with a local non-profit. We can’t wait for somebody else to do it, they won’t! It’s our responsibility and in reality our need to do something that helps others. Why else would we be in health care?

It’s time to do something!

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